Biography Katharine Tynan

Katharine Tynan

photo of Katharine Tynan
  • Time Period1859 - 1931
  • Place

Poet Biography

Katharine Tynan was born in Dublin, Ireland on 23rd January 1859. She was the daughter of a cattle farmer and spent most of her childhood on his farms. She was a keen reader and began writing poetry whilst in her teens.

In 1884 she fell in lve with Oxford graduate Charles Fagan. The melancholy love poetry she wrote following his death a year later aptly demonstrates her ability to convey deep feeling.

In 1886 she met W.B. Yeats and they became life-long friends. He even proposed to her at one point, but it was to scholar Henry Albert Hinkson that she eventually became married in 1893. They had three children together: Theobald Henry (1897), Giles Aylmer (1899), and Pamela Mary (1900).

Tynan produced a great deal of writing during her career. It is reported that she was capable of delivering one novel per month! Apart from two anthologies, sixteen other collections of poetry, five plays, seven books of devotion, and one book about her dogs, she wrote over 105 popular novels, twelve collections of short stories, and innumerable newspaper articles. Her work was marked by an unusual blend of Catholicism and feminism, but was always drawn from real life.

Tynan suffered from bouts of depression throughout her life, but particularly after the sudden death of her husband in 1919. However, she kept writing, especially poetry, up until her death in London in 1931.